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Governor DeSantis Activates the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program

March 17, 2020

By: Ferran Arimon & Daniel McIntosh

In the wake of the economic impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), Governor DeSantis has activated the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program. The short-term, interest-free loans are intended to help bridge the gap between the time the economic impact occurred and when a business secures other financial resources, including payment of insurance claims or longer-term SBA loans. Up to $50 million has been allocated for the program.

The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program offers loans of up to $50k per small business, and loans of up to $100k may be made in some special cases. The loans will be interest free for a term of one year and thereafter there will be a rate of 12% per annum on the unpaid balance.

Applications will be accepted under the program through May 8, 2020 (contingent on available funds). Applications will be accepted by qualified for-profit, privately held small businesses that maintain a place of business in the state of Florida. All qualified applicants must have been established prior to March 9, 2020, and suffered economic injury as a result of the designated disaster.

The program will be managed by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. The information required to apply for an Emergency Bridge Loan can be found here: https://floridadisasterloan.org/. All counties in Florida have been designated as disaster areas for purposes of this program.

Additional disaster assistance loans may become available to Florida Small Businesses soon. The United States Small Business Administration (the “SBA”) has announced that it will be providing small businesses impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) up to $2 Million in Disaster Assistance Loans. The disaster assistance loans will become available to Florida Small Business following a request from Governor DeSantis.

The SBA is coordinating directly with state governors to submit requests for Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance. Any such Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance declaration issued by the SBA makes loans available to small businesses and private, non-profit organizations in designated areas of a state or territory to help alleviate economic injury caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). A list of the eligible disaster areas for the SBA Disaster Assistance Loan program can be found here: https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/Declarations/Index.

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Ferran

Ferran Arimon is an attorney in the firm’s Commercial Real Estate Group. He focuses his practice on commercial real estate transactions, including the acquisition, disposition, financing, development and leasing of various property types, as well as construction financings and re-financings. His practice also includes corporate and securities law.

Ferran regularly advises buyers, sellers, developers, landlords and tenants in real estate transactions related to multifamily developments, industrial properties, office buildings, shopping centers, restaurants, hotels, retirement communities and vacant land. He also assists clients with leasing contracts, title review and survey analysis, contract negotiation for purchase and sale, due diligence, negotiation of transfer documents and finalizing of transaction closings.

Additionally, Ferran has experience in corporate and securities law, mergers and acquisitions, and tax law. He has worked with clients to structure financing transactions in compliance with federal and state securities laws, having represented both public and private companies in mergers, acquisitions, capital raising, and corporate governance matters. He has also counseled clients on a broad range of tax issues and business planning issues from entity selection and formation to dissolutions.

Prior to law school, Ferran was an analyst at real estate investment management company in Miami. His role centered around underwriting, valuing, and identifying acquisition opportunities for distressed or value-add commercial and residential real estate acquired through joint ventures, direct Investments and non-performing loans portfolios.

Fluent in Spanish, Ferran regularly writes articles on a variety of emerging legal issues.

Ferran earned his law degree from the University of Florida Levin College of Law and his MBA from the University of Florida Warrington College of Business. Prior to law school, he received his undergraduate degree from Babson College, where he majored in finance and was a member of the men’s tennis team.

Daniel

Destined to become a lawyer, Dan is a Central Florida native surrounded by more than a handful of lawyers among his relatives – including his dad who was the City Attorney for a number of Central Florida cities and public entities, siblings, cousins, in-laws, and even children. But first Dan wanted to explore the ski slopes of the “wild west” after attending Duke University and before returning to his southern roots to attend the University of Florida Law School. While in college, Dan worked in high-end retail and as a rodman on a survey crew. With this surveying experience behind him, Dan ultimately found his passion in real estate law.

With a focus on business trends, Dan has successfully guided some of the most recognizable Central Florida companies through multi-site, multi-jurisdictional real estate acquisitions, financings, and dispositions. He advises clients on acquisition, leasing and financing, title review and survey analysis, environmental issues and zoning, with attention to every detail of these transactions – from document preparation, review of title commitments, endorsements and coverages, surveys, and closing statements, and all the negotiating and documentation in between. Clients include owners and lenders of shopping centers, retail stores, restaurants, gasoline and convenience stores, golf courses, ski resorts, hotels, and condominium properties.

In addition, Dan has negotiated and closed hundreds of high end residential transactions on sites throughout the southeast.

As a real estate leader in the firm, Dan’s mission has included building and mentoring efficient teams committed to the clients’ business success, echoed in his commitment to his community. A resident of Winter Park for many years, Dan has served in leadership roles on many civic, church, and charitable boards. A graduate and long-time participant in the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce Leadership Program, Dan served as its alumni association president, wrote its initial by-laws, and was a recipient of its Winter Park Chamber of Commerce Community Leader Award. His leadership role on the Winter Park Library Board is helping to bring the City’s vision of a new library and events center to life in Martin Luther King Park. Dan is also a past president of the Orlando Shakespeare Theater and has been a member of its Board for over 20 years.

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